Vietnam requests China to immediately stop sending bombers to conduct drills in Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago, said the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry’s spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang.
Hang made the statement in Hanoi on May 21 in response to reporters’ question regarding the Chinese exercises, saying China’s dispatch of bombers to conduct take-off and landing drills in Hoang Sa has seriously violated Vietnam’s sovereignty over the archipelago and run counter to the Vietnam-China agreement on basic principles guiding the settlement of sea-related issues as well as the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China.
China’s acts have also adversely affected negotiations on the Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC) between the ASEAN and China, fueled tensions and caused instability in the region, and hampered efforts to maintain peace, stability and cooperation in the East Sea, she said.
“Vietnam has full legal foundation and historical evidence affirming its sovereignty over Hoang Sa and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagoes in line with international law,” the spokesperson noted.
Vietnam asks China not to conduct militarisation activities and to seriously respect the country’s sovereignty over the two archipelagoes, observe the Vietnam-China agreement on basic principles guiding the settlement of sea-related issues and the DOC, and create a favourable environment for the maintenance of regional peace, stability and cooperation, Hang said.VNA